March 13, 2017

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A Modest Beginning & a Difficult Challenge

Originally published June 26, 2007

images by John McConnell, Northern Ireland.

Almost from their very beginnings, image atlases of the Moon differed from drawn ones in depicting each area under different illumination conditions. For example, the early photograhic atlas by Pickering showed each area under multiple lighting angles, as did Kuiper’s later Photographic Lunar Atlas and Consolidated Lunar Atlas. Not even the monumental Charte der Gebirge des Mondes drawn by Julius Schmidt after 34 years of observing could depict the lunar surface under different angles of illumination. John’s small series of images show the ease of gathering images for a multiphase atlas - simply be lucky with the clouds and take images every night! Even small scale images such as these illustrate how the impression of a crater changes as the terminator moves further away, night by night. This makes me think of a project: image a feature - say Copernicus - at relatively large image scale every night of a lunation. Using LTVT, images taken at slightly different scales and with different librations can be rectified to a uniform perspective. Put them together as a video and then enjoy seeing the changes through the month. And it's not even necessary to wait until all 28 images are available to begin assemblying the movie - even a fade between low Sun and full Moon views would be informative. Perhaps a future digital atlas of the Moon will include a month of views for every area…

Chuck Wood

Technical Details:
ETX 90mm and Philips Toucam Pro working at Prime Focus, Baader IR/UV filter. Four AVI made of approx 300 images per single image, total approx 1200 images

Related Link: Gassendi under simulated iluminations

Yesterday's LPOD: Almost Right

Tomorrow's LPOD: A Small Pix and a Short Story


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